What Is Close-Up Magic?
Close-up magic is magical entertainment that happens right in front of you, magic you can not only see but feel and touch. This intimacy is what makes it so different from other types of magic. An expert close-up magician will involve and interact with the audience far more than a stage magician (or any other form of entertainer for that matter).
Most close-up magicians use common props such as playing cards, coins, sponge balls and rope. And all magicians perform the same basic magical effects with these props, making them appear, disappear, change, levitate, break and restore, or penetrate other objects. What is amazing about close-up magic is that it happens so close to you, sometimes while you are holding the props!
Close-up magic can be performed at just about any social occasion - weddings, parties, dinners, banquets, open days, trade shows - wherever people gather in small groups and have a few moments to relax. A close-up magician usually mingles with the guests at an event, moving from group to group or table to table. The magician will politely approach guests and then spend anything from 2 to 10 minutes entertaining them with magic. The time spent with each group depends on how many guests are at the event, how much time is available and how interested the guests are in magic.
There are many standard close-up magic effects and standard routines used to present them. For example, the ?Ambitious Card? where a chosen card repeatedly rises to the top position in a deck of cards without any shuffling or cutting, or the ?Sponge Balls? where the balls move invisibly between the magician?s hands and those of the spectator?s. In fact, these routines are freely available if you care to look. Anyone can search the internet and buy books and DVDs on close-up magic, or even the props and standard routines.
So, if anyone can buy the props and learn how to perform close-up magic what makes an expert close-up magician? Some people may have a talent for magic or be more committed to practising the skills required, but these things happen in the background. Two things make the difference to the audience; 1) how the magician presents their magic and 2) whether the magician can tailor their magic to a particular audience.
Presentation is very important - it is what makes close-up magic entertaining. A really good magician will be creative and present their magic in an original and entertaining way. Sometimes humorous, sometimes mysterious, sometimes just plain weird and freaky. The magic should become a vehicle for the personality and ideas of the performer. However, every audience is different, and the people at an event can be from any age group, male or female and from any walk of life. An experienced magician should have an extensive repertoire from which to choose magical effects, and present them in an entertaining way, to all the different types of people they meet at an event.
This is why close-up magic is so versatile and great entertainment. It is suitable for almost any situation and any audience, and the only entertainment where you can see the impossible, weird and wonderful right under your nose!
About the Author: Dan Gifford is a UK magician based in Leicester and an expert close-up magician. Dan performs close-up magic throughout the UK at parties, weddings, corporate events and trade shows. You can visit his website at http://www.dangifford.com. For more general information about magic and UK magicians visit http://www.magician-entertainer.co.uk